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“We all grow up watching the world’s greatest acts play the Super Bowl and you can only dream of being in that position,” the singer said in a statement. “I am humbled, honored and ecstatic to be the center of that infamous stage this year.”
Ready for The Weeknd: who is he?
Born in Toronto to Ethiopian immigrant parents, The Weeknd (real name: Abel Tesfaye) started his career in the 21st century way – uploading songs to YouTube in 2010.
According to Grammy.com, he chose his stage name because he dropped out of high school and “left for a weekend and never (came) back home.” His stage name is missing an “e” because there was already a Canadian band known as The Weekend.
He has since won three Grammys, eight Billboard Music Awards, five American Music Awards, two MTV Video Music Awards, and nine Juno Awards. He was a musical guest on Saturday Night Live three times. His last SNL appearance came in March 2020, just before the pandemic locked up most things. On that show, he shocked the audience with his bandaged face, but the look was part of the act.
“The meaning of the whole headband reflects on the absurd culture of Hollywood celebrities and people who manipulate themselves for superficial reasons to please and be validated,” he told Variety in a teasing and mysterious interview. (The New York Post has a long schedule of the singer’s gory bandage look.)
What is expected?
We don’t know if The Weeknd will wear face bandages during the big game, but he won’t be wearing them in a 30 second ad for his halftime performance. In it, he is dressed in an all-black outfit, complete with leather jacket and shiny shoes, and is walked through a stadium tunnel to the field.
In a 10-minute press conference, The Weeknd confirmed that he has put his own money into getting only the Super Bowl sets he wants. Although the game organizers cover all production costs, the singer put in $ 7 million to “make this show what he wanted,” his manager told Billboard. He certainly had to be creative with the performance, which usually takes place in the middle of the football field, but this year may be different.
“Because of COVID and for the safety of the players and the workers, we have built the podium in the stadium … I’m not going to tell you anything else because you will have to watch on Sunday.”
When a local Tampa reporter asked if The Weeknd would include the stadium’s built-in pirate ship, he said he would do so somewhat, but not reveal details. The 103-foot-long ship is located in the North End Zone and was made by the same company that produces Disney props. Its cannons fire when the home team’s Buccaneers score points, and an animatronic parrot regularly talks to fans.
In the past, fans were part of the halftime show, surrounding the performers on the field, kind of like a real club show. Don’t expect that this year.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, new health and safety guidelines will be in effect for the entire event. Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium normally seats more than 65,000, but due to pandemic restrictions, only about 25,000 fans will attend the game, including 7,500 vaccinated health workers who have been given free tickets.
And fans will be kept at a social distance in “ sitting capsules, ” People magazine reports. They will also have to wear masks, receive free hand sanitizer, and pay for food or souvenirs with contactless payment options.
How to watch?
The Super Bowl will air on CBS on Sunday, February 7 at 6:30 pm ET (3:30 pm PT) and will be streamed live through the CBS All Access app. You can also stream it for free on Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Fire TV. The mobile apps from the NFL and Yahoo Sports will all stream the game for free on phones and tablets as well.
We’ve got a comprehensive explanation of the many ways to get CBS or other services that play in our.
If you miss the game, watch YouTube
Last year’s dance show was on display. Right after the show, the NFL posted the full 14-minute performance to YouTube for free viewing. It seems likely that the league will post this year’s show back to the NFL YouTube account right after halftime, and we’ll link to it here when they do.
Here’s last year’s show while we wait:
More Super Bowl music
The Weeknd won’t be the only famous singer to perform in the Super Bowl. The pregame anthem is a duet performed by Grammy nominees Jazmine Sullivan and Eric Church.
Prior to the national anthem, the Grammy-winning singer will sing HER America the Beautiful.
And there will be more music after the game. Verizon is hosting Big Concert for Small Business, a live streaming musical event hosted by Tiffany Haddish and featuring artists such as Alicia Keys, Brandi Carlile, Christina Aguilera, Luke Bryan and Miley Cyrus, along with more from HER, Jazmine Sullivan and Eric Kerk.
The concert will be streamed on Verizon’s Twitter, TikTok, Twitch, and YouTube channels, as well as on Yahoo, Fios, and iHeartRadio, starting after the match at 8:00 p.m. PT. The organizers are encouraging fans to make a donation of $ 10 to support small businesses by texting SMALLBIZ to 20222.